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Bruce Arians praises Ed Stinson, Dan Williams for play vs. Raiders

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The fifth round pick got a game ball.

Thearon W. Henderson

Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians met with the media on Monday, as he always does the day after a game. Among other things he talked about (via AZCardinals.com), he praised a couple of his defensive linemen -- rookie Ed Stinson and veteran Dan Williams.

Arians said Stinson, the team's fifth round draft pick this year, "got a game ball for his performance" against Oakland. He "had a great game and really stepped up two weeks in a row."

His playing time has gone up since Calais Campbell's injury. The rookie known for being very solid against the run also "got a better pass rush going on inside" on Sunday. In nine pass rushing opportunities, he had two pressures, according to Pro Football Focus.

Veteran nose tackle Dan Williams played a bunch, too. he has also stepped up in Campbell's absence, playing more than just base DT. Arians said Williams "played a really good ballgame."

Arizona has changed some of their formations in Campbell's absence.

Typically, the Cardinals would go with two linemen and three linebackers, plus Deone Bucannon playing a linebacker position, when they go nickel/dime. They still do from time to time. However, the past two weeks, we also see them keeping three defensive linemen and going with only linebacker off the edge.

Stinson and Williams saw playing time in those formations despite not being known for their ability to rush the passer.

Once Campbell returns, their role will be dimished, but their play now builds confidence in what the defense can do.